I have no idea what will happen over the holidays. All I know is that there are options, ideas, possibilities, and an appointment or two. I have no desire to know with certainty how surprises will unfold and what gifts may come. Life continues to remind me that anticipating goodness is a sweetness one should enjoy and savor.
At the same time, there is a lingering feeling of dark unknowns and uncertainties. The pull to see life’s glass half empty competes with the desire to hold onto hope. It is an endless battle that overwhelms even the strongest. It seems that for many the blues and the holidays are mysteriously linked to each other.
I have come to appreciate the wonder embedded in blues music, especially ones with a holiday twist. In the midst of the angst, the singer always expresses her/his confidence in the hope and the future. Mantras I continue to hear and embrace include the following.
There will always be something that we do not know. We can go two directions with this knowledge. One ways leads one to focus and obsess on this reality. Life can easily become dominated by our doubts, fears, and dark imaginings. The other direction leads to accepting life as it is, seen and unseen, known and unknown, with a focus on purpose and aspiration.
Hope is as near as our willingness to see and embrace it. A word can gift us with sight. A sound can lead us to the source. An act by another can create an overwhelming awareness.
We get to choose. I refuse to accept that the unknowns define what I know. Said another way, “not disease that prowls through the darkness, not disaster that erupts at high noon,” (Psalm 91.6) not the unknown that I might imagine are going to define the moment I have in hand. My commitment is that I will live and live strong. I will act and act with intent. I will hope and live out that hope by being a compassionate, engaging force in the lives I touch.